In North Carolina, most employers are required to carry workers compensation insurance. All Greenville injury attorneys know this. In fact, it doesn’t matter what state you live in. Employers in the U.S. are required to carry workers comp insurance. According to the laws in North Carolina companies who employ 3 or more people must carry workers compensation insurance. The reason for this is simple. If a worker gets hurt while on the job, their employer is required to take care of them. They must provide them with the medical care they need. They are also required to provide their employees with replacement wages while they’re out of work. These benefits must continue until the employee is ready to return to work.
The problem is that not all businesses do what they’re supposed to do. If you work for a small company, they may think they can get away with no carrying insurance. They figure the odds of an employee getting hurt at work are small. If someone does get hurt, they figure they can offer to help with expenses until the employee is ready to get back to work. Since many workers, especially younger employees, don’t know any better, some companies get away with this.
The other problem you could run into is that your workers comp claim is denied. In cases like this, it doesn’t matter whether your employer has workers compensation insurance. If they aren’t going to pay your claim, what does it matter? If your claim is denied, or you think your boss doesn’t carry the required insurance, call and talk to an experienced workers compensation attorney in Greenville right away.
Why Should Employers Pay to Carry Workers Compensation Insurance?
Small business owners complain that it costs too much money to carry workers compensation insurance. It can be especially frustrating if years go by without a single workplace accident. A lot of companies keep signs up on their walls boasting of how many days it has been since there was a workplace accident. After months or years go by, it may seem unnecessary to pay for workers compensation insurance.
As much as these companies may not want to pay for the insurance, they don’t have a choice. If a company is found to be non-compliant with the North Carolina workers compensation laws, they’ll be facing very stiff penalties. In North Carolina, it can be extra scary for employers who are non-compliant. Unlike many other states, North Carolina does not specify what will happen to a company who fails to carry the requisite workers comp insurance. This means that penalties could be anything the state wants them to be.
What Will Your Workers Compensation Attorney in Greenville Do if Your Employer Doesn’t Have Insurance?
If you get hurt at work, your employer should take care of you. If you find out they don’t have workers compensation insurance, you do have options. Your workers compensation attorney in Greenville can help you file a claim with North Carolina’s Uninsured Employer Fund. Under this fund, you can get your medical care covered. You’ll also receive weekly replacement wages. It’s no different from people who are receiving regular workers compensation benefits.
As far as your employer is concerned, there is no free ride. If your claim is covered under the UEF, the State of North Carolina will place a lien on the company. They’re going to expect to be reimbursed for the money the state paid out on your claim. This lien will likely include other fees, such as attorney fees or administrative expenses. Your employer would be better off just paying the $150 per month for workers compensation insurance.
Can’t Your Greenville Injury Attorney Sue Your Employer Instead of Going Through Workers Comp?
One of the first things our clients ask us is why they can’t just sue their employer in court. For all other injuries, the normal thing to do is sue the person responsible. For example, if you’re hurt in a car accident, you can sue the other driver for damages. The same is true in a slip and fall. If you fall on a wet floor in a grocery store, you can sue the owner of the store. You may even be able to sue their management company. So, why doesn’t the same rule apply to workplace accidents?
Like it or not, you can’t just sue your employer if you get hurt on the job. States require companies to carry workers compensation insurance for a reason. They know that if companies were required to pay a defense attorney every time someone got hurt at work, they’d go bankrupt in no time. Even for small and medium-sized businesses, it’s not unusual for employees to get hurt every now and then. Knowing it can cost several thousand dollars every time somebody sues an employer, it just doesn’t seem fair to treat them like regular defendants.
What if the UEF Denies Your Claim?
As stated above, if you get hurt at work and your employer has no insurance, you can file a claim against the North Carolina Uninsured Employer’s Fund. They have the right to approve or deny your claim just like workers compensation insurance companies. If they don’t feel your claim is valid, they aren’t going to approve it. Now, with a regular worker’s comp claim, it’s your word against the insurance company. However, if you’re denied a claim under the state’s UEF, you’ll be going up against a state agency. This is not something you’ll want to do by yourself.
We recommend that you call and talk to an experienced workers compensation attorney in Greenville instead. At least they know they law, so you don’t have to worry about being at a serious disadvantage.
Contact an Experienced Greenville Injury Attorney Right Away
If you’re hurt at work and learn that your employer doesn’t carry workers compensation insurance, you should call our office right away. Learning this kind of information may make you frustrated and angry. Your employer is supposed to take of their workers. At the same time, you’re worried what you’ll do about your medical bills. If you can’t work, you’ll have no income to help pay your bills. Your workers compensation attorney in Greenville can help.
We suggest you call our office as soon as possible after your workplace accident. We’ll help you file your claim and, if need be, assist with your appeal. The initial consultation is free, so you have nothing to lose.